LeanTaas CEO: EHRs are not built to handle capacity optimization

Interminable waiting.

That is a reality in healthcare that causes tremendous frustration and deep patient dissatisfaction. One startup that has launched tools to turn this dynamic around is LeanTaaS.

In a recent interview, the Santa Clara, California-based company’s CEO, Mohan Giridharadas, said that LeanTaaS has “created the category” of software-as-a-service designed to unlock capacity for healthcare providers. The company currently has more than 300 employees and contracts with more than 500 health systems.

Giridharadas said his company’s goal is to close the gap between clinical and operational sophistication in healthcare, as he believes the latter trails the former by at least a decade. LeanTaaS does this by developing machine learning to optimize providers’ capacity.

“Our job is to unlock productivity. The health system’s job is to monetize the productivity,” he said.

LeanTaas, which has more than 500 health system customers across the country, seeks to increase productivity mainly through its three flagship SaaS products designed to optimize capacity for infusion chairs, operating rooms and hospital beds.

Measuring the impact of unlocked capacity is simple, so it is easy for health system customers to understand the value of the SaaS products they adopt, Giridharadas declared. Examples of this include health systems tracking how much the number of surgeries or infusions they perform has increased in the year since implementing the service or tracking how their unit costs for delivering a clinical service has been reduced.

After implementing a SaaS product focused on unlocking capacity, it is usually plain for health systems to see the difference in productivity, Giridharadas said. For example, after Dignity Health adopted LeanTaaS’ operating room service designed to increase capacity via proactive block release patterns, the health system found it achieved a 153% increase in blocks released from 2019 to 2020.

Giridharadas said results such as these are why LeanTaaS has a 100% refund guarantee and cancel-anytime clause in its contracts. While those contract features may differentiate LeanTaaS from some of its competitors, such as Qventus and XSOLIS, Giridharadas said his company’s biggest competitor is providers’ belief that they can handle capacity optimization on their own.

“Health systems have not fully appreciated the power of doing this,” he said. “They often think that if they’ve got two or three analysts and two or three data scientists, they can whip something together and get better at it without fully appreciating the level of sophistication and investment it takes to optimize capacity.”

While something like infusion scheduling might seem simple for hospitals to optimize, Giridharadas argued that it takes an extreme attention to detail and a comprehensive approach in order to do this effectively. Knowing that his company has spent seven years and “tens of millions of dollars” building its software for infusion scheduling optimization, he said it’s impossible for hospitals to produce the same results by building in-house tools.

Thinking that expensive EHRs – hospitals sometimes can spends tens of millions of dollars on adopting an EHR — can handle capacity optimization is also a mistake, he contended.

While EHRs serve as excellent repositories for patient data and financial information, he said they simply don’t have the level of artificial intelligence sophistication built in that is required for optimization that will produce measurable results year–over-year.

Giridharadas shared an analogy LeanTaaS tells health systems who think the amount of money they funnel into their EHR means the system will provide quality capacity optimization tools: You can spend $40,000 on a new car, but it’s summer now and you want to go water skiing. There’s no point complaining that you spent $40,000 on a car if it’s not going to take the water ski. You need a boat if you want to go water skiing, and therefore it’s something different.

“We believe we are the intelligent, prescriptive and predictive layer on top of the EHR that leverages your prior investment,” he said. “Our software leverages all of the data and knowledge and builds operational excellence on top of it.”

Photo: shylendrahoode, Getty Images

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